Archive of Articles in the "The Vice President" Category

Manchin Is The New Lieberman

[ Posted Wednesday, February 24th, 2021 – 17:57 UTC ]

While everyone agrees on the obvious truism that President Joe Biden is now the most powerful Democrat in Washington, the person next in line in this new partisan power structure isn't as obvious. Because it is not actually Kamala Harris, Chuck Schumer, or Nancy Pelosi, despite them being (respectively) vice president, Senate majority leader, and speaker of the House. No, instead the biggest power player in Washington after Biden is now Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia. He has now set himself up to be "the next Joe Lieberman." Under President Barack Obama, Lieberman acted as a virtual caucus of one, determining what was allowably "centrist" enough for him to support and vote for. Manchin has now thrust himself into exactly the same position, and by doing so will hold the keys to Biden's ultimate legislative success or failure for at least the next two years.

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Fighting The Ongoing Big Lie

[ Posted Monday, February 22nd, 2021 – 17:49 UTC ]

Since the riot at the Capitol last month, both Democrats and the news media have managed a notable achievement, by slapping a label on what is actually a persistent and ongoing danger to both them and American democracy -- Republicans using made-up "voting fraud" claims to make it harder and harder for citizens to vote. Because this fake and non-existent "voter fraud" was not just what Trump latched on to in order to try and overturn an election result he didn't like, but it is also the root of a decades-long Republican attempt to cling to power even while getting a minority of the votes cast.

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Trump's Second Impeachment Trial (Day 4)

[ Posted Friday, February 12th, 2021 – 19:43 UTC ]

On this date in history, ten-score-and-twelve years ago, Abraham Lincoln was born. Also on this date, 22 years ago, the Senate voted to acquit Bill Clinton of the charges made against him in only the second impeachment trial in American history. Today, this year, saw the fourth day of Donald Trump's second impeachment trial in the Senate. Today was the day the legal team for Donald Trump got to present their defense.

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Trump's Second Impeachment Trial (Day 2)

[ Posted Wednesday, February 10th, 2021 – 19:23 UTC ]

The second day of Donald Trump's second impeachment trial was dedicated to the opening of the prosecution's case against him. The House managers have a full 16 hours to present their case, but it remains to be seen how much of that they'll actually use. When I began writing this (during their dinner break), they had already been at it for five and a half hours, and they didn't adjourn for the day -- but then later they only used a limited amount of time afterwards (the total came in under the full eight hours allotted for the day, in other words).

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Trump's Second Impeachment Trial (Day 1)

[ Posted Tuesday, February 9th, 2021 – 18:07 UTC ]

The second impeachment trial of former president Donald Trump began today in the United States Senate. Today was largely a procedural day, which began with an initial vote to adopt the impeachment rules that Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell worked out yesterday. This was followed by an extended argument from both the House impeachment managers and Trump's lawyers about whether even holding this trial was constitutional or not. At the end, the Senate voted to affirm that the trial is indeed constitutional, by a vote of 56 to 44. The trial then adjourned until noon tomorrow.

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Impeachment Preview

[ Posted Monday, February 8th, 2021 – 16:48 UTC ]

For only the fourth time in American history (and for the second time in approximately one year), the Senate will convene an impeachment trial tomorrow, to consider the charges against Donald Trump. Even at this late date, however, there are many unanswered questions about what exactly is going to take place this week, so I thought I'd review where things stand as of now (some of these issues may actually be resolved by the time I write, edit, format, and post this article, I should mention in advance).

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Friday Talking Points -- Republicans In Disarray

[ Posted Friday, February 5th, 2021 – 18:59 UTC ]

This week we were treated to the spectacle of the Republican Party largely voting in support of an advocate of using deadly violence towards her political opponents. How the mighty have fallen -- since this used to be the party that dearly loved to sanctimoniously lecture everyone on how high morals were an absolute necessity in politics, and that even the concept of "moral relativism" was evil. That all went out the window when they nominated the most amoral man imaginable for president, of course, but it's still rather shocking to see this once-publicly-righteous party wallow in the filth of QAnon and flirt with ideas like advocacy for assassinating political opponents.

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Biden's First Week

[ Posted Thursday, January 28th, 2021 – 16:14 UTC ]

President Joe Biden has been in office a little over a week, and so far he has exceeded expectations. Now, to be fair, these are still the earliest of days. Biden is still enjoying his "honeymoon" period with the public, with the press, and (largely) with Congress. That will fade, undoubtedly. Also, Donald Trump left so many egregious messes lying around that cleaning up the worst of them was pretty low-hanging fruit indeed. But, so far, Biden has not disappointed in a big way once.

None of his cabinet choices raised any huge alarm with even the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, and they've been getting steadily confirmed with huge bipartisan votes. There will be a few later on that will be more contentious, no doubt, but so far Biden's track record on putting together his administration is a pretty admirable one.

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It Is Time For The Government To Take The Threat Of Right-Wing Extremism Seriously

[ Posted Wednesday, January 27th, 2021 – 17:32 UTC ]

This really shouldn't be all that extraordinary, but sadly it is. The Department of Homeland Security just issued a warning about the possibility of right-wing violence and/or terrorism. Here are the pertinent facts:

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Schumer Wins Round One

[ Posted Tuesday, January 26th, 2021 – 16:45 UTC ]

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer won his first big political battle against Minority Leader Mitch McConnell last night. McConnell, in a fit of petulance, had dug in his heels and was refusing to agree to the new Senate rules proposed by Schumer which will dictate the chamber's power structure for the next two years. This is normally a routine vote, even with an evenly-balanced 50-50 Senate -- there wasn't much drama the last time this happened, when Tom Daschle and Trent Lott worked out an agreement. Essentially, Senate committees will be evenly divided between Democratic seats and Republican seats, but Democrats will still control what gets out of committee and (more importantly) what makes it to the Senate floor for a vote. After all, even though the Senate is evenly-divided, Vice President Kamala Harris is the deciding vote for the Democrats. But that's been true since last Wednesday, and yet McConnell blocked the new rules until today, which had left Republicans still chairing all the committees -- even though they're now in the minority.

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